More than soil

The Physical Land Resources Master’s programme aims to form experts that are able to manage and protect the land as well as manipulate the specifics and properties of the soil. The programme encompasses a variety of different aspects, such as the physics of the soil, meteorology and natural hazards.

Skilled, knowledgeable experts

This programme offers several skills inherently tied to a Master of Science, such as the ability to identify a problem, form a hypothesis, test it through experiments of your own design in the field and to report results and findings to both your peers and a more general public. Another, very important asset is the ability to think analytically and synthetically, while still being creative – all part of a problem-solving mentality. You’ll gain all the knowledge and skills needed to build a successful career as a scientist.


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Any questions?

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How does it work?

Our internationally oriented master’s programme is a collaboration between the Vrije Universiteit Brussel, Ghent University and two research centres, namely the International Centre for Eremology and the International Training Centre for Post-Graduate Soil Scientists. Field work, excursions, laboratory work, exercise sessions and computer workshops are an important component of the Physical Land Resources programme.

Study credits

ECTS (European Credit Transfer System): 1 credit represents 25-30 hours of study activity

Preparation course

All Physical Land Resources students are highly recommended to take part in the BE PreP summer school offered at Ghent University. This is a preparatory programme to refresh your general knowledge of mathematics, chemistry, statistics and/or economics. It also allows you to attend ICT lectures and workshops and to integrate yourself in Belgium with ease.

Programme structure and organisation

The first year of the two-year, full time programme provides a basis in physical land resources, with a main subject in either Soil Science or Land Resources Engineering. The second year offers specialised courses in one of the two main subjects. The course curriculum of the first year and of the main subject in ‘Soil Science’ of the second year is organised at the Ghent University, whereas all courses of the main subject in Land Resources Engineering of the second year are organised at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel. Students in Land Resources Engineering have to reside in Brussels during the second year. The academic year starts the last week of September.

Learning outcomes

Learning outcomes describe the intended knowledge and understanding, skills and attitudes that you must master after completing your studies. Do you want to know more about the specific learning outcomes of this programme? Click here for more information.


A master degree opens doors in many different branches and sectors. You will be able to work in the private sector, (non-) governmental organisations, or continue your academic career as a PhD researcher. Not sure what your next step should be? The VUB helps you with your first steps on the job market.


The VUB helps you to make your first step in the job market with workshops, networking events, job fairs, tips ‘n tricks for job interviews. All an ambitious student needs!

First step on the market


If you want to continue your academic career, you can apply for a PhD position at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel. All you need is a promoter, research subject and sufficient funding. Are you up for this challenge?

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First step in the job market

Employment can be found in the fields of:

  • soil management
  • environment assessment
  • water management, including water supply and control
  • stability of taluds and excavations
  • use of soil as construction material
  • coastal development
  • erosion and sediment transport

The VUB helps you to make your first step in the job market with workshops, networking events, job fairs, tips ‘n tricks for job interviews. All an ambitious student needs!

Want to know more about our alumni?

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Language requirements

Proof of English proficiency is compulsory for all students. You need one of the following documents to proof you level of English:

  • TOEFL iBT with minimum level: 79; 
  • IELTS with minimum level: academic module 6.5; 
  • ITACE with minimum level: B2;
  • Cambridge English Qualification Scale with the following minimal level: 170;

Certificates and other proof of language tests may not pre-date the first enrolment by more than five years.

2. Having successfully completed at least one year of secondary education with English as language of instruction, or having successfully completed secondary school in a Belgian institution;

3. Having successfully completed programme units in higher education with a minimum of 54 ECTS-credits where English was the language of instruction.

Specific admission criteria

The M.Sc. programme is open to holders of a degree in exact or applied sciences equivalent to at least  years of university studies (eg. B.Sc. in geology, geography, chemistry, botany, biology, B.Sc. in agriculture, environmental sciences, civil engineering, education, ...). Holders of a specialized degree in physical land resources (e.g. M.Sc. Soil Science) can apply for exemption of the courses of the first year in the master programme and thus be admitted directly to the second year of the M.Sc. programme.

Enrolling for this plan is also possible having completed the Preparatory Programme Master of Science in Physical Land Resources.

For more details on admission requirements and application

Click here

Application deadline

Prospective students are advised to apply as soon as possible, even if they have not yet obtained their degree. Applications can only be submitted through our website www.vub.be/en/apply

  • Students who require a visa (non-EU/EEA nationals) need to submit their application before June 1st
  • Students who do not require a visa must apply before June 1st
  • Note: if the proof of English proficiency or APS certificate is not ready before the deadline, you can always submit it later instead of missing the deadline

For more details on admission requirements and application

Click here

Tuition fees

All Flemish universities in Belgium are subsidised by the government, which results in relatively low tuition fees. The general tuition fee for our master programmes is €890/year. Some master programmes have an increased tuition fee for students with a non EU/EEA nationality. A detailed overview of the tuition fees can be found on: www.vub.be/en/tuition-fees.